Commencement Ceremony

The commencement ceremony is an ongoing tradition to celebrate the academic successes and accomplishments of Lake Washington Institute of Technology (LWTech) graduates. Administrators, faculty, and staff all work hard to ensure this event is a memorable, special occasion for all graduates. To learn more about requirements for participation, receiving your diploma, and details related to the ceremony, be sure to check with Enrollment Services

Commencement is coordinated by the Student Programs office and lasts about an hour and a half. If you don't see information you need listed, please contact Student Programs.

High School Student Eligibility

Academy students may attend the commencement ceremony and the Academy Graduation. For information regarding the Academy Graduation, visit High School Programs.

Commencement Ceremony Information

Academic Honors

Academic honors are a symbol of academic achievement at Lake Washington Institute of Technology. An Honor Cord is a token consisting of twisted cords with tassels on either end, awarded to our students meeting the following LWTech established eligibility requirements:

  • 4.0 Summa Cum Laude (with highest honor, gold and silver cords)
  • 3.7 - 3.99 Magna Cum Laude (with great honor, gold cord)
  • 3.5 - 3.69 Cum Laude (with praise, silver cord)
Pick Up Your Cords

To pick up your cord, visit Student Programs in East Building, E128 and bring photo ID, after June 1st, 2016. Cords will only be physically handed to the student eligible to receive the honor.

If you qualify for an honor cord after Spring quarter grades are posted, you are eligible to pick up a cord at that time, but not before.

If you are not able to visit Student Programs, we will accommodate schedules by staying open later, scheduling an appointment or having cords available at the ceremony.

How Honors are Calculated

Honors are established by the calculation of all college level classes (100 or above), from the beginning of the LWTech transcript through the winter quarter of your graduation year. For the ceremony, spring quarter grades are not calculated because they will not have been posted by the time the ceremony is held.

Enrollment Services manages all transcript information and all bestowed academic honors are based on information provided from that transcript.

For programs that begin at one college and end at LWTech, honors will only be bestowed based on the LWTech transcript, not the other college.

Cap & Gown, Invitations (Student Regalia)

Student regalia is a tradition for all commencement ceremonies and shows you have completed a great educational milestone. All graduates intending to be in the ceremony must wear a cap, gown, and tassel. Students may attend the ceremony as an audience member.

  • The regalia package is for sale in the college bookstore beginning late April or early May.
  • The package price is determined every year and ranges from $25.00 to $35.00.
  • The package includes a cap, gown, and tassel.
  • The size of the gown is determined by height and weight. Generally speaking the bookstore orders enough stock for a wide choice of sizes. If you need an accommodated size, please contact the bookstore and ask them to order early. You may also work with Student Programs for further assistance.
  • Regalia packages are yours to keep. If you would like to donate your cap and gown to Student Programs we will accept it and help another student defray the package cost.

Bachelor Students

Students receiving a bachelors degree will wear black gowns.

Associate and Certificate Students

Students receiving an associates degree or a certificate will wear blue gowns.


Commencement announcements are available for purchase through the college bookstore, beginning in early May. There are no limits on the amount of announcements each graduate may purchase, so please purchase them as early as possible.

Programs will be made available to all students and guests. They are limited and not kept from year to year. Please keep your commemorative copy provided on the day of the ceremony.

Travel & Accommodations

Travel Visa Letters for International Students

When international students plan to attend their commencement ceremony, they may ask for a verification letter for their family and friends to apply for travel visas. Letters for visa applications are available from the Director of Student Programs. Please email the Director with the following information.

  • Your name
  • Full name and correct spelling of visitors
  • Country leaving from

Please allow several weeks lead time for the preparation and sending of letters. For questions, please contact Vikki Korsunskaya in Student Programs. If you are unable to attend during business hours please contact us to make an after hours appointment.

Student Accommodation

Lake Washington is dedicated to providing accommodation so students may fully participate in its activities; including commencement. If you need accommodation in order to attend the ceremony, please contact Student Programs by calling (425) 739-8314 or emailing our staff. For hearing impaired students and guests, interpreters will be at the ceremony. If you are a hearing impaired student, please contact Student Programs so we may seat you accordingly.

You may also request accommodation for friend and family members attending the ceremony. Seats will be reserved for your party. Student Programs will work with you to make the best seating arrangements to fit the needs of the party.

Guest Accommodation

If you are a guest attending the ceremony and need accommodation please contact our office by completing the following request form.

For coming soon!

Guest Information

We are happy you are spending your time honoring and celebrating our students. Please use this information to plan your trip. If you do not see your question answered here, please contact Student Programs.

Accommodation Seating
LWTech reserves accommodation seating for our guests. That will include listing the kind of accommodation needed and the number of seats requested. Accommodation seating will either be along the sides of the seating sections or the front row of guest seating; depending upon the needs of the guest and the seating set up. Please register any guests needing accommodation with Student Programs before June 15, 2016.

Arrival Time
All graduates are required to check-in at the student room, on the first floor of the Lynnwood Convention Center between the hours of 11:30 AM and 1:30 PM. Graduates will be required to sign in and ensure all paperwork is completed, before line up begins. Graduates will be lined up at 1:15 PM. At 1:50 PM, the students line up will be closed. Please make arrangements for the care of your children, as they are not allowed in the dressing area. Note: Do not leave any valuables in these rooms during the ceremony.


No drugs or alcohol are allowed at this event. As with all college functions, the college's student conduct code will apply.

Unfortunately, no childcare is provided during the event. Please make arrangements for the care of your children, as they are not allowed in the dressing area. Additionally, strollers will not be allowed in the main hall. While convenient, they have are hazardous in the crowded hall.

Guest Limit
Tickets are not required for the event. However, to accommodate the number of guests it is asked that graduates consider limiting the number of guests to between 4 and 6 family and friends.

Limited Seating
Guests arriving between 1:45 and 2:00 PM will not be allowed to walk on the concourse or allowed in the hall. During this time, the processional of graduates will be placed and all non-graduates will be stopped. Parking will be limited. Overflow parking is available across from the Lynnwood Convention Center.

Lost and Found
Contact Campus Safety and Security. We ask that no valuables be left in dressing rooms during the ceremony as we cannot guarantee the safety of personal property. If something is lost, it will be returned to the school and turned into lost and found in the Safety and Security office, East Building, E145.

Overflow Seating
Due to the capacity of the hall, an overflow room is scheduled so you may watch your graduate. Please use this resource if the main hall is filled. 

A reception on the first floor of the Center follows the ceremony. All guests are welcome and we hope you enjoy a treat from our Bakery program. A variety of cookies are available for free, including gluten free options. Cookies are available only after the ceremony.

Due to space restrictions and safety issues, strollers are not allowed in the main hall. Please make other arrangements for strollers. Strollers are allowed on the concourse and overflow room.

Commencement Speakers

 Lake Washington is proud to host inspiring and motivating speakers for our annual ceremony. Lake Washington seeks speakers who fit our workforce development mission, prepared to acknowledge hard work done by our exceptional students. Please keep posted on our announcements of speakers.

2016 Speakers



  Guest Speaker Faculty Speaker Student Speaker
2015   Jim Howe - Computer Security Network Technology  
2014      Richard Savedo - Multimedia Design / ASG President
2013      Shalliah Swinney - High School Academy / Pre-Nursing / ASG President
2012      Peter Huff - Multimedia Design / ASG President

Commencement Photography

Photography is being provided by Darel Roa Photography. Students will have various photo options they will need to choose.

To schedule a cap and gown portrait, please contact the studio. The portrait will be available at Commencement. Other than the graduate portrait sitting, there are no designated photo locations for guests. When taking photos, please do not block isles and return to your seat as soon as possible. Graduates are not lined in alphabetical order so guests determine when a photo is to be taken. Guest lingering in a spot for a long time will be asked to return to move or return to their seat.

Photographs will be taken of each participant at the ceremony and will be available for purchase from Darel Roa Photography. Proofs will be sent after the ceremony with instructions for ordering. For questions, please call (888) 848-6463 or (253) 848-6463.

The Commencement Photos brochure explains more about photography and how to order.

Commencement Location

Lynnwood Convention Center
3711 196th St. SW
Lynnwood, WA 98036

Commencement is held in the Lynnwood Convention Center. With free and convenient parking, local restaurants, and service to and from the regional freeways, it is an ideal location.

  • Information provided here will help you plan your experience.
  • Seating is available starting at approximately 12:00 PM (noon). Seats cannot be reserved.
  • Seating capacity is determined by safety regulations and by the number of graduates and faculty attending the ceremony. On average, there are approximately 850 seats for guests.
  • The example seating diagram provides the expected seating chart.
  • An overflow room is made available for guests who want room to move around. It is on the convention center's first floor, Room 1D.
  • Restrooms are located on both floors.
  • An elevator is available to travel between the first and second floors.
  • Guests are able to enter on either floor. However, at 1:50 PM, general entrances will be closed so the graduation processional may be moved from the first floor staging area, to the second floor hall. Any and all guests trying to access the main hall will be delayed until the processional is finished.
  • The ceremony is televised on screens in the main hall, and in the overflow room.
  • Standing Room is available, but is monitored for safety. Safety monitors, hired by the Center, are available to meet needs you may have, as well as monitor the use of the space for safety.
  • Disability seating is available when it is confirmed with Student Programs. Please contact Student Programs to confirm the number and type of disability seating needed.
  • Sign language interpreters are scheduled to interpret through